Title:
Board game method and device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A board game device and method that includes a game board having a plurality of spaces positioned along the surface of the game board. The device also includes a plurality of bridge pieces receivable by the game board, at least one standard die, and at least one word bridge die. The device includes a plurality of bridge reduction cards along with a plurality of subject cards listing a variety of topical categories. The invention provides a method of building a word bridge with a string of words connected by joining at least one preceding word with the first letter of at least one succeeding word to create the word bridge of successive words aligned in tandem.



Inventors:
Landis, Mark T. (Boynton Beach, FL, US)
Application Number:
10/329872
Publication Date:
07/01/2004
Filing Date:
12/26/2002
Assignee:
LANDIS MARK T.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63F3/04; (IPC1-7): A63F3/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PIERCE, WILLIAM M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Michael K. Dixon (West Palm Beach, FL, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A method of playing a word game wherein at least one step comprises: the building of a word bridge with a string of words connected by joining the last letter of at least one preceding word with the first letter of at least one succeeding word to create the word bridge of successive words aligned in tandem.

2. The method according to claim 1, further including the step of providing a game board having a first surface and opposite surface for playing said word game.

3. The method according to claim 2, further including the step of providing a plurality of board spaces positioned on at least one of the first surface and opposite surface of the game board, wherein said spaces include a predetermined color.

4. The method according to claim 3, further including the step of providing a plurality of bridge pieces receivable by said plurality of spaces.

5. The method according to claim 1, further including the step of providing a plurality of subject cards listing topical categories corresponding to said predetermined color of said board spaces.

6. The method according to claim 1, further including the step of providing a pad for constructing a word bridge utilizing conjoining words.

7. The method according to claim 3, further including the step of providing at least one standard die for selecting the number of spaces to advance on said game board.

8. The method according to claim 1, further including the step of providing at least one word bridge die for determining the number of words of said word bridge.

9. The method according to claim 1, further including the step of providing a timer mechanism to measure the elapsed time during the construction of a word bridge.

10. A board game device comprising: a game board having a first surface and an opposite surface; a plurality of board spaces positioned on at least one of the first surface and opposite surface of the game board, wherein said spaces include a predetermined color; a plurality of bridge pieces receivable by said plurality of board spaces; a plurality of subject cards listing topical categories corresponding to said predetermined color of said board spaces; a pad for constructing a word bridge utilizing conjoining words; at least one standard die; and at least one word bridge die.

11. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said word bridge is constructed by linking the last letter of a word with the first letter of another word in a corresponding topical category.

12. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said game board includes a surface having a plurality of graphical images.

13. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said graphical image includes a river.

14. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said graphical image includes a star.

15. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said color of said plurality of spaces is selected from the group of pink, blue, yellow, green, orange and purple.

16. The board game device of claim 10, further comprising a plurality of bridge reduction cards providing for the reduction of the required number of words included in a word bridge.

17. The board game device of claim 16, further comprising a card box to securely store said plurality of subject cards and bridge reduction cards.

18. The board game device of claim 17, further comprising a timer mechanism to measure elapsed time during the construction of said word bridge.

19. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said bridge pieces include a color selected from the group of pink, blue, yellow, green, orange and purple.

20. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said game board includes a foldable surface.

21. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said standard die includes a plurality of faces having numerical indicia inscribed on said plurality of faces.

22. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said word bridge die includes a plurality of faces having numerical indicia and the word bid inscribed on said plurality of faces.

23. The board game device of claim 10, wherein a land bridge comprises a first side and a second side having a plurality of bridge members.

24. The board game device of claim 23, wherein said first side and said second side of said bridge member provides a housing to receive said plurality of bridge pieces during construction of a land bridge.

25. The board game device of claim 10, wherein said topical categories are selected from the group consisting of “objects and things,” “places,” “animals, vegetables, and minerals,” “sports and games,” and “about people.”

26. The board game device of claim 10, wherein at least one topical category of each subject card is marked by an asterisk.

27. The board game device of claim 10, further comprising a writing tool to construct the conjoining word components of said word bridge.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] This invention relates to a board game device and method, and in particular to a board game device and method of forming word bridges constructed from conjoining word components.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Board games are generally known in the prior art having various objectives and game elements. The available board games may include elements such as word clues, common word puzzles and the like. For instance, a number of board games in the prior art have incorporated cross word puzzles as a part of a board game device. Specifically, in U.S. Pat. No. 4,850,595 to Sherman et al. a device is disclosed which provides a crossword puzzle having individual word portions, whereby associated definitions constitute clues for solving the individual word portions of the puzzle. Moreover, the Sherman device includes a marking apparatus for filling in the individual word portions of the crossword puzzle in distinguishable characters. While the Sherman et al. device can be an entertaining word game for the basic purpose and function for which it had been specifically designed, the Sherman et al. design is deficient with respect to its failure to provide the most efficient and convenient structure for engaging in word games other than crossword puzzles.

[0003] Other board games in the prior art are deficient in consequence of lacking a meaningful objective or equipped to handle only a limited number of players. As a result, certain board games become uninteresting as the games do not create a challenge for competitive players. For example, several word games available in the prior art limit a players word selection to a small number of topics and themes. For instance, U.S. Pat. No. 4,789,162 to Harris describes a word completion game utilizing a game board having spaces for filling in missing letters. The board game disclosed in Harris includes the use of word clues, wherein the missing letters are utilized to complete messages in two directions. In addition, the competing player is provided with a predetermined word clue, and is further required to choose the word to be completed from a gameboard having one prepositioned letter in the particular word. Oftentimes board games of this type can become unexciting to a particular player as the word choices are narrowed by certain game restrictions. Additionally, the word choices of the player are not selected by chance, such as by throwing dice or the like.

[0004] Other board games in the prior art may provide an element of chance while stimulating competition among individual players. However, these board games may include equipment that is difficult to use resulting in the board game being ineffective for competitive and entertainment purposes. In consequence, often users are compelled to utilize monotonous board game devices that are tedious and retard competition among participating players.

[0005] Many individuals experience shortcomings and difficulties when playing the board games available in the prior art. Whether it is a board game device that is uninteresting to the particular user or a device that is cumbersome to use, the devices remain problematic during operation. Board game devices incorporating the use of word games should be very simple to use; however, what appears to be a simple process can be extremely difficult and sometimes tedious. Accordingly, there exists a need for an improved word game method and device that is interesting and challenging to a user.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION

[0006] The present invention relates to a board game method and device that can accommodate a plurality of individual players or team players in a word building game. According to the invention, a board game device can comprise a game board, at least one standard die, at least one word bridge die and a plurality of bridge pieces. A board game device also includes a timer, a plurality of pads and writing tools, a plurality of subject cards and a plurality of bridge reduction cards. The board game device also can include a card box for receiving the subject cards and bridge reduction cards.

[0007] In the present invention, the game board can include spaces having a variety of predetermined colors. In one embodiment of the present invention, the colors of the spaces can be selected from the group of pink, blue, yellow, green, orange and purple. In addition, the colors of the spaces may correspond to designated topical categories. For example, a space having the color pink may correspond to the category of “objects and things”, where as a space having the color yellow may correspond to the category of “animals, vegetables and minerals.” The colored spaces provide a player with a visual indication of the particular topical category which also corresponds to the identified color. The topical categories are listed on the accompanied subject cards. A subject card can list six topics, wherein each topic is identified with a specific color corresponding to a category in which the player must construct a word bridge. For example, a blue colored space will correspond to a topical category identified by the color blue.

[0008] It is an object of the present invention to provide a method of building a word bridge with a string of words connected by joining the last letter of at least one preceding word with the first letter of at least one succeeding word to create the word bridge of successive words aligned in tandem. The word bridges can be constructed according to a specific topical category. In one embodiment of the present invention, each individual player rolls a standard die to determine the order of play among the participating players. The player obtaining the highest roll indicated by the numerical representation on the face of the standard die proceeds first and each subsequent player proceeds in a clockwise rotation. Next, the highest rolling player rolls the die to determined the appropriate number of spaces to advance along the gameboard as indicated by the standard die. The color of the corresponding space the player lands on further determines the category of the specific word bridge to construct. Landing on a space having a star is designated as a wild card space and allows the player to select the topic. At this point, a die labeled as the word bridge die is rolled to determine the length of the bridge the player is required to build. After determining the length of the bridge a card must be drawn in the category indicated by the corresponding game board space.

[0009] In one embodiment of the present invention, the board game device can include a timer. A timer can be set for a predetermined period. The player is then required to complete the construction of the word bridge within this period. If a player successfully constructs a word bridge before the expiration of the predetermined time period, the player can collect a colored bridge piece. The color of the bridge pieces also corresponds to a color that can be identified with a particular topical category. The objective of the invention further includes becoming the first player to collect the requisite number of bridge pieces to construct a land bridge, cross over a river and reach the finish line.

[0010] It is an object of the present invention to provide a game of chance that includes an elevated level of entertainment and competition for competing players. The board game device provides the benefit of allowing a player to select from a wide array of topics in building a word bridge. The players of the board game device can construct word bridges of varying lengths.

[0011] Still yet another object of the present invention is to provide a board game device providing a form of entertainment that can be completed within an reasonable time period while maintaining competitiveness. The present invention also provides a board game device allowing a player to link a plurality of words from individual word components. For example, in the word bridge d o g oat the word dog is linked with the adjacent word goat to form the conjoined word “dogoat” wherein the words are linked utilizing the shared letter “g.” Additionally, the board game device allows words to be linked within a personalized categories. As shown above, the words dog and goat may be classified within the topical category of animals to form a word bridge consisting of two words. The board game device can provide topical categories of increasing difficulty dependent on the skill level of the player. Additionally, the invention provides a mechanism for providing a convenient and challenging form of educational activity for family and friends in multiple topical categories.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0012] There are presently shown in the drawings embodiments which are presently preferred, it being understood, however, that the invention is not limited to the precise arrangements and instrumentalities shown.

[0013] FIG. 1 is a front view of a game board of a board game device.

[0014] FIG. 2 is a front view of a subject card.

[0015] FIG. 3 is a front view of a word bridge card.

[0016] FIG. 4 is an exemplary five word bridge in the topical category of “animals, vegetables, and minerals.”

[0017] FIG. 5 is a collection of components of the board game shown in FIG. 1.

[0018] FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a standard die.

[0019] FIG. 7a is a front perspective view of a word bridge die.

[0020] FIG. 7b is a back perspective view of the word bridge die shown in FIG. 7a.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0021] The present invention relates to a board game device 10 and method. More particularly, the present invention relates to a method and device providing an increased level of play among competing players engaged in a word building game. The present invention can accommodate a plurality of players in individual play or team players. The invention further provides convenience and flexibility allowing the participating players a means of entertainment combined with an educational element via word building. Although the illustrations provided herewith depict the present invention in specific embodiments, it is understood that the illustrations are intended to be for illustrative purposes only. Accordingly, it is understood that the invention can exist in several embodiments.

[0022] FIGS. 1-3, taken together illustrate a board game device 10 configured in accordance with the invention arrangements. A board game device 10 which has been configured in accordance with the inventive arrangements can include a game board 12 having game board spaces 18 positioned along the surface of the game board 12. The device 10 also includes at least one standard die 20, at least one word bridge die 22, a plurality of subject cards 24 and a plurality of bridge reduction cards 26. It is an object of the present invention to provide a method of building a word bridge 28 with a string of words connected by joining at least one preceding word with the first letter of at least one succeeding word to create the word bridge of successive words aligned in tandem.

[0023] The game board 12 of the board game device 10 can include a first surface 14 and an opposite surface 16. At least one of the first surface 14 and the opposite surface 16 of the game board 12 can provide graphical representations corresponding to images associated with the construction of a word bridge 28. For instance, the game board 12 may bear a graphical image of a river 32, as illustrated in FIG. 1. The game board is foldable allowing the game board to be easily stored.

[0024] In the present invention, the game board 12 also includes a plurality of spaces 18 positioned along the game board 12. The plurality of spaces 18 can be positioned on at least one of the first surface 14 and opposite surface 16 of the game board 12. The spaces 18 can be aligned in a predetermined direction along the surface of the game board 12. In the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 1, the spaces 18 are positioned on the first surface 14 of the game board 12. The spaces 18 are aligned to form a path towards the edge of the river. The spaces 18 are utilized to advance accordingly along the path of travel towards the river as a player is engaged in play.

[0025] The spaces 18 can be featured on the game board 12 in various colors. In one embodiment of the present invention, the color of the spaces 18 can be selected from the group of pink, blue, yellow, green, orange and purple. In addition, the color of the spaces 18 may correspond to designated topical categories 48. For example, a space having the color pink may correspond to the category 48 of “objects and things,” whereas a space having the color blue may correspond to the category 48 of “places.” A yellow colored space 18 may correspond to the category 48 of “animals, vegetables, and minerals.” Spaces 18 having the color orange and purple may correspond to the categories 48 of “sports and games” and “about people,” respectively. The colored spaces 18 provide a player with a visual indication of the particular topical category 48 as the player progresses along the path of travel on the game board 12. The spaces 18 located on the game board 12 also can include a graphical depiction of a star 54. The spaces 18 having a star 54 represent a wild card space. A wild card space allows the player to select a topical category 48 of choice.

[0026] The present invention also includes a card box 34. The card box 34 is equipped to receive the plurality of subject cards 24 and bridge reduction cards 26 during periods of non-use. The card box 34 also provides a housing facility to securely store the cards, thereby preventing the cards from being misplaced or destroyed. In one embodiment of the present invention, the board game device 10 can include fifty subject cards 24. Each subject card 24 can list six topical categories 48, thereby providing a total of three hundred topical categories 48 in a fifty card set. At least one category 48 of each of the subject cards 24 includes a category 48 marked with an asterisk. A category 48 marked with an asterisk indicates that the topic is characterized as an “all play” topic. The selection of a topical category 48 marked as “all play” requires every player to attempt to construct a word bridge 28 having the longest possible length instead of the active player constructing a word bridge 28 based on the number indicated by the roll of a standard die. Under “all play” guidelines, as in normal play, players must perform under timed conditions. In the event of a tie, the timer 38 can be reset and the players receiving the tie must continue to construct from their original word bridge 28. The player having the longest word bridge 28 after the two time periods have elapsed is declared the winner. If the players remain tied after the expiration of the second time period, the players must roll the standard die to determined the winner. The player receiving the highest roll of the standard die is the winner of the round.

[0027] The cards labeled as bridge reduction cards 26 allow the selected player to reduce a future word bridge 28 by one word. For example, a player required to build a word bride 28 consisting of five words can utilize a bridge reduction card 26 to reduce the required number of words in the word bridge 28 to four words. A player can utilized a bridge reduction card 26 at any time during the corresponding game. However, a player can only utilize a bridge reduction card 26 once in a specific game. The card box 34 can include a total ten bridge reduction cards 26.

[0028] The board game device 10 includes a standard die. The standard die includes six sides, with each side having a numerical representation selected from the numbers one though six. The board game device 10 also includes a word bridge die 20. The word bridge die 20 includes six sides having a combination of numerical and graphical representations on each side of the die. In one embodiment, the word bridge die 20 can include the numerals three, four, five, six and seven on a side of the die, and the word “BID” on the remaining side of the die. The numbers of the word bridge die 20 indicate the length of the word bridge 28 to build. The word “BID” located on the face of the word bridge die 20 indicates that all players must bid to construct a word bridge 28. The player obtaining the “BID” bids first by stating how many words will be included in the word bridge 28 the player intends to construct. Moving clockwise, each succeeding player has the option to raise the bid. The high bidder is the player that must construct the word bridge 28 according to the length determined according to the bid. Once the length of the word bridge 28 is determined, a card is drawn and the topic listed according to the color of the space or wild card space landed on is the topical category 48 that must be played.

[0029] A timer 38 also can be included in the device 10. The timer 38 can be set for a predetermined period to determine the period of time the active player has to complete construction of a particular word bridge 28. The timer can provide an audible sound to indicate that the time period has expired, similar to an alarm clock or the like.

[0030] The present invention also includes paper pads 50, writing tools 52 and a plurality of bridge pieces 36. The paper pads 50 and writing tools 52, such as a pen and pencil are utilized by a player to construct the word bridges 28 of the players during the game. The bridge pieces 36 can be utilized by a player to maneuver along the spaces 18 of the game board 12. The color of the bridge pieces 36 can be selected from the group of pink, blue, yellow, green, orange and purple. The board game device 10 includes at least six bridge pieces 36 in each of the selected colors of pink, blue, yellow, green, orange and purple. Therefore, the total number of bridge pieces 36 provided in a board game device 10 is thirty six. In one embodiment of the present invention the participating payers can range between two and six. In a game having six players, each player is initially designated a bridge piece 36 of a different color.

[0031] The board game device 10 can be played conveniently with the number of players ranging from two to six persons. However, the device 10 also can accommodate one player engaged in individual play. The objective of the game is to collect one bridge piece 36 in each color (category) and use the collected bridge pieces 36 to construct a land bridge 30 along the edge of the river. The land bridge 30 is utilized to cross the river and allow the player to reach the finish line. A player can obtain a bridge piece 36 through forming word bridges 28 by linking the last letter of a word with the first letter of another word in the same category 48 during game play. For example, a five word bridge 28 in the topical category 48 of animals may include the word bridge as follows: d o g oa t ige r a m onkey.

[0032] The board game device 10 is set up for play by centering the game board 12 in an area within proximity of all players, whereby all players are within reach of the game board 12. Each competing player may receive pad 50 and writing tool 52, which may be a pencil. Players may also share pads 50 and writing tools 52, such as in team play. Play begins by determining which player will go first. Each of the competing players rolls the standard die, whereby the player obtaining the highest roll goes first and each additional player proceeds clockwise according to descending die numbers. For example, a player rolling a six supersedes a player rolling a five or four.

[0033] Next the first player rolls the standard die and advances his bridge piece 36 the appropriate number of spaces 18 along the game board 12 as indicated by the standard die 22. The color of the space 18 the player lands on determines the category 48 of the word bridge 28 to construct. The space marked with a star 54 is referred to as a wild card space and allows a player to select a category 48 of the player's choice. However, when utilizing a wild card space the player must select the topical category 48 before the player has viewed the categories 48 listed on the subject card 24.

[0034] Subsequently, the word bridge die 20 is rolled to determine the length of the word bridge 28 the player must construct. The player must then select a subject card 24 and construct a word bridge 28 in the topical category 48 determined by the space 18 on the game board 12 corresponding with the color and topical category 48 on the subject card 24. The timer 38 is activated for a predetermined period and the word bridge 28 is constructed. The player can utilize the pad 50 and pencils to construct the word bridge 28. When constructing a word bridge 28 a player must circle the first letter of each word, as shown by the word bridge 28 d o g oat. Circling the first letter of each word assists in the monitoring of the word length. If a player successfully constructs a word bridge 28 before the time expires, the player can collect a bridge piece 36 in the specific topical category 48. A player can elect not to collect a bridge piece 36 if the player already has collected a colored bridge piece 36 identified by that particular color.

[0035] If a player successfully completes the construction of a word bridge 28 and does not need the specific color of a bridge piece 36, the player can receive an additional turn. For example, a player successfully constructing a word bridge 28 in a category 48 identified with a blue bridge piece 36 can receive another turn in an effort to obtain a bridge piece 36 in another category 48 identified with the space the player may land on, such as yellow, green, pink, orange and purple. After completion of a player's turn play then passes on to the next player in a clockwise rotation.

[0036] If a Bidder, not including the roller, successfully completes construction of a word bridge 28, but does not need the color of the bridge piece 36 earned, the bidder can elect to receive a bridge reduction card 26 instead of the bridge piece 36. The bridge reduction card 26 allows the player to reduce a future word bridge 28 by one word. If a bidder, including a roller, does not successfully complete the required word bridge 28, the bidder is penalized by losing his next scheduled turn.

[0037] As competing players collect bridge pieces 36 the players can construct a land bridge 30. A land bridge 30 provides a path across the river located on the game board 12 allowing a player to cross the river. The land bridge 30 includes a first side 40 and a second side 42. Both the first side and the second side of the land bridge 30 include six bridge members 44. Each bridge member 44 is equipped to receive one bridge piece 36. The player can position bridge pieces 36 along a bridge member 44 after earning a colored bridge piece to construct a completed land bridge 30. Constructing a completed land bridge 30 allows the player to cross the finish line.

[0038] If a player approaches the river and a land bridge 30 is not completely constructed, the player can elect to detour around a loop to collect the remaining bridge pieces 36 needed to complete construction of the land bridge 30. If a player reaches the land bridge 30 before completion due to a roll of the standard die that places the player past the entry of the partially constructed land bridge 30, the player becomes river bound. For example, if a player is three spaces 18 from the entrance of a partially constructed land bridge 30 and the player rolls a numeral four with the standard die 22, then the players must move four spaces 18. After moving the bridge piece 36 the appropriate number of spaces 18 the player's bridge piece 36 is positioned in the river. In other words, the player's bridge piece 36 is received by the river and washed towards the reentry point 46 on the game board 12.

[0039] If a player successfully crosses a completed land bridge 30, the player on the game board 12 closest to the leader picks the topic for their final word bridge 28. The player must then roll the word bridge die 20 and attempt to construct their final word bridge 28. If the word bridge is built to the required length, that player wins and the game is over. If the player does not construct the word bridge 28 according to the required length, play continues and the lead player waits until it is their turn. After receiving another turn at play, the next closest player to the active player must select a topic of play. The lead player then rolls the word bridge die 20 and attempts to successfully construct a final word bridge 28. Play can continue until a player crosses the river and successfully constructs a final word bridge 28.

[0040] It will of course be understood that the invention is not limited to the specific details described herein, which are given by way of example only, and that various modifications and alterations are possible within the scope of the invention as defined therein. Those skilled in the art may make modifications that include variations in size, materials, shape, form, function and manner of operation, without departing from the principles and concepts set forth herein.





 
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